WHO EMRO Weekly Epidemiological Monitor: Volume 12, Issue 38 (22 September 2019)
Current major event
Cholera outbreak in Sudan
On the 9th of September the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) of Sudan announced a cholera outbreak in the Blue Nile state and soon the outbreak spread to Sinner state. Till 18th September a total of 124 suspected cholera cases, with 7 related deaths (CFR 5.65%) were reported.
In Sudan, several outbreaks of suspected cholera/ acute watery diarrhea (AWD) have been reported in the past years. The recent past outbreak was unprecedented, it started on August 2016 from Kassala state and spread to over 18 states and 145 localities. Till March 2018, the outbreak has caused more than 36,494cases including 823deaths (CFR:2.3%).
This year, Sudan was affected by heavy rains during the month of August. Flash floods resulted in destruction of 41,514 houses, damaging another 27,242, and displacing around 350,000 population. Around 11,000 latrines were destroyed by the floods resulting in contamination of drinking water sources. In addition, the turbidity of drinking water increased which rendered standard chlorination measured of drinking water ineffective across several areas and exposing the population to high risk of waterborne diseases.
As of 18hSeptember 2019, a total of 124 suspected cholera cases with 7 related deaths (CFR 5.65%) were reported from the two affected states of Sudan (See graph). The index case was reported on 2 September 2019 from Ganees Shareg (east) in El Rosaires town, Blue Nile State. In total 7 localities are affected in both states; four in Blue Nile and 3 in Sinner states (see table). Of the total cases reported, 61% were females and 39% are male.
The cholera outbreak declaration by the FMoH is important and welcomed development and this will lead to timely response and greater support by the local communities and partners. The national Cholera Task force was activated and the cholera response plan was developed and shared with relevant partners. A standard case definition and tools for collecting surveillance data were distributed to the health facilities in both states. Early warning surveillance was enhanced with activation of zero reporting.